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St. Ann police officer injured during pursuit of stolen car

The scene of an accident where a St. Ann police officer crashed into a telephone pole while responding to another crash involving a police vehicle and a stolen car on Tuesday Sept. 10, 2019, at Adie Road and Lee Lane, close to Northwest Plaza. Photo by Laurie Skrivan, lskrivan@post-dispatch.com

ST. ANN — A St. Ann police officer was injured following a chase of a stolen car on Tuesday night, police said at a news conference. 

The officer was scheduled for surgery, according to Lt. Col. Charles Thal of the St. Ann Police Department, but the officer did not have life-threatening injuries. 

At 8:45 p.m., an officer pulled over a stolen vehicle, Thal said. After the officer got out of his car, the stolen vehicle backed into the police car, then drove away, but not before police put a tracking device on it.

Officers then called for backup, and one officer who responded nearly collided with a vehicle at the intersection of Adie Road and Lee Lane.

That officer's car swerved and hit a telephone pole to avoid hitting the vehicle in the intersection. 

Thal said he did not know if the suspects were in custody, but the stolen car had been abandoned in a field and canines were searching the area. 

The injured officer is a five-year-veteran, but his name has not been released because all of his family had not been notified. 

"It's amazing. He's a tough guy," said Thal. 

The injury marks at least the seventh St. Ann officer injured in a vehicle pursuit since 2009, according to department records obtained by the Post-Dispatch.

The department serves a population of about 14,000 residents and employs 54 officers, but it had more chases last year than the St. Louis County police’s 950 officers and nearly as many as the 1,200 officers with the St. Louis Police Department.